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CHAPTER TWENTY-THREE 
WHERE CAN I GET A KNIFE LIKE THAT?
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"Okay, okay, come on..." She turned me around to face her. My amber eyes looking up at her, the shadows hiding Brittany's blue eyes, "Listen, nothing's going to happen to you." She said softly.

"How do you know that?" I asked.

"Well... I don't. But--BUT--", she insisted, "I do know that you have a bat, and I," She grinned like a madman when she yanked her fist out from her pocket and produced a swissarmy knife. Bright cherry red, "I've got this!"

"Greeeaaaat..." I smiled when she punched me in my arm, but even that small moment-- that small moment between my friend and I, two teenagers out and about doing mischief; even though I wasn't neccassarily rebellious, Brittany was plenty rebellious, enough to make up for me-- it was ruined.

Out from the darkness, ringed my the moonlight, the dark forest that surrounded my school seemed to shudder. Birds squawked and flew off into the sky, black silhouettes across another darker espanse. Infinite and immensely empty. Until one sound echoed back, as if responding to Brittany's loud clap.

A howl

c h i l l e d    t h e   a i r .

Once I heard that howl, I booked it to the nearest exit. Brittany was hollering my name, but I wouln't stop. I wouldn't make the same mistake twice.

My hairs were standing on end, and the tingle of fear seemed to echo right through the very fibre of my being. I didn't care what she said when my friend finally caught up to me and pulled me aside. I didn't care that I was startin to hyperventilate. 

I wanted out.

"Abby, just calm down--!" She started.

"NO!" I yelled and yanked my arm out of her grip. I could tell that she was sweating too, so I knew she knew that this was a bad idea. "I want to go home." My words fell out from my mouth in a shuddering whisper. 

Suddenly a cold wind caressed th both of us and left us shivering madly. I glanced at Brittany, "I want to go home," I repeated. She nodded without another word. Her dark brown hair flying about her face as the wind began to pick up.

This place was getting too creepy even for her, and I could see the fear lighted in her eyes by the shards of moonlight that filtered down form above. It was powdery white like toxic ash, and it was weird because I could swear I could almost taste it.

It's acrid alkaline taste on cold and moon sat heavy on my tongue, and I felt sick to my stomach.

And it looked like I wasn't the only one who thought so, because in just a few seconds-- right when we reached the black rusted iron gate we scaled-- a howl pierced the night. It was haunting. It was rageful. 

It was... unfamiliar.

And I took that as a blessing. "Come on!" I tugged Brittany's sleeve frantically to pull he rout of her zoned out trance. I knew that howl wasn't Gabriel's-- which should have fightened the s&t out of me at that time, but I didn't know any better...

All I knew was that that howl belonged to a creature much bigger than the wolves that were often sighted near our school. And much much scarier. Brittany nodded shakily and hoisted me up so I could get a head start. She jumped on, making the fence clamor and reel back, shaking both of us. 

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